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Collingswood Democratic Municipal Chair Kate Delany.

Camden Democrats win back 16 county committee seats in Collingswood

Progressives lose control of local Democratic party after two years

By David Wildstein, June 08 2021 8:38 pm

The Camden County Democratic machine has reclaimed the sixteen county committee seats they lost in 2019, dealing a blow to progressives who took control of the local Democratic Party only to lose it after just two years.

Collingswood has a winner-take-all system where voters cast a single vote for a 16-candidate slate.

That means Democratic Municipal Chair Kate Delaney will be out when the local organization reorganizes later this month.   She was among the slate that lost on Tuesday.

On May 11, Mayor James Maley was re-elected to a ninth four-year term by a 2-1 margin against an aggressive challenge from an insurgent progressive slate.

Although the election is technically non-partisan, Maley and his running mates for the three-member borough commission had the backing of the Camden County Democrats.

Delaney, finished sixth in a campaign that had the support of prominent progressive groups.

The Democrats of Camden County slate outpolled the organization slate by 74 votes, 945 to 871 – a 52%-48% margin – in 2019.

Collingswood was the lone victory for the progressive slate in a primary that featured nearly 90 challengers.

Delany replaced Robert Tonsberg, who lost his bid for re-election to his county committee seat.

Collingswood – the Montclair of the South – was one of just a few New Jersey towns that voted for Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential primary.  Sanders beat Clinton 1,578 to 1,519 – a 59-vote, 51%-49% win in a state Clinton won by 26 points.

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